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Lacquer vs Formica

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Forum topic by Damian Penney posted 1148 days ago 2433 views 0 times favorited 11 replies Add to Favorites Watch
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Damian Penney

1140 posts in 2492 days


1148 days ago

Topic tags/keywords: formica lacquer

So I’m in the very early stages of thinking about a potential project that will have white sides. I’m considering either spraying with lacquer or potentially using something like Formica. Which of these options do you feel would give the more ‘luxe’ appearance? I’m not too familiar with how modern Formica looks/feels so any input appreciated.

-- I am always doing that which I can not do, in order that I may learn how to do it. - Pablo Picasso


11 replies so far

View pintodeluxe's profile

pintodeluxe

3028 posts in 1313 days


#1 posted 1148 days ago

Sprayed lacquer or latex would look more luxurious than formica. The main benefit with paint is you can still shape / ease your edges as desired. With formica you are limited to square and gentle radius shapes.
Woodcrafters has a gravity feed hvlp gun for $34. It looks exactly like my Porter cable gun, which I really like. Get the 2mm tip kit for latex.
Best of luck

-- Willie, Washington "If You Choose Not To Decide, You Still Have Made a Choice" - Rush

View Lee A. Jesberger's profile

Lee A. Jesberger

6642 posts in 2480 days


#2 posted 1148 days ago

Hi Damien;

Modern formica looks and feels just like old formica, it’s just cleaner.

I would go with lacquer, too. Unless it was something that was going to take a beating.

Good to see you posting.

Lee

-- by Lee A. Jesberger http://www.prowoodworkingtips.com http://www.ezee-feed.com

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Damian Penney

1140 posts in 2492 days


#3 posted 1148 days ago

Hi Lee :) Yeah it’s been a while – we moved house last summer so it’s taken a while to get settled and get back into things. Electrician comes tomorrow to install a new sub-panel in my now much larger shop space so I’ll be making some dust very shortly :)

The only downside to the move is that the piece I’d been building for a specific spot in our old home no longer has a place to live so it’s still only about 20% complete. Ah well :) Figure I’ll just shelve it and move on.

-- I am always doing that which I can not do, in order that I may learn how to do it. - Pablo Picasso

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Damian Penney

1140 posts in 2492 days


#4 posted 1148 days ago

New project is a credenza/media cabinet. I’d thought about buying one but the one I liked would be prohibitively expensive to ship from the East Coast so now I’m thinking I’ll just build it myself.

-- I am always doing that which I can not do, in order that I may learn how to do it. - Pablo Picasso

View Damian Penney's profile

Damian Penney

1140 posts in 2492 days


#5 posted 1148 days ago

Look I’m going for is smooth white gloss sides – wood doors and interior. Sounding like lacquer is the way to go.

-- I am always doing that which I can not do, in order that I may learn how to do it. - Pablo Picasso

View poopiekat's profile

poopiekat

3398 posts in 2235 days


#6 posted 1148 days ago

Makes me wonder, whatever happened to that plastic laminate that was solid color all the way through? It was briefly available in the late 70’s, early 80’s then disappeared. That ugly black substrate only looks good on.. black formica, and having those black substrate edges makes everything look like chunky commercial fixtures. Being able to wrap a piece of furniture in solid color laminate, with no black lines along every corner, would be awesome.

-- Einstein: "The intuitive mind is a sacred gift, and the rational mind is a faithful servant. We have created a society that honors the servant and has forgotten the gift." I'm Poopiekat!!

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Damian Penney

1140 posts in 2492 days


#7 posted 1147 days ago

Is formica not solid color all the way through?

-- I am always doing that which I can not do, in order that I may learn how to do it. - Pablo Picasso

View poopiekat's profile

poopiekat

3398 posts in 2235 days


#8 posted 1147 days ago

Damian, most plastic laminates that I’ve ever worked with, formica, arborite and others had a thin topcoat of color pressed under high pressure to layers of resin-impregnated paper of a hideous brown/black color. When the edges are exposed on your project, they show that ugly line at every outside-corner joint. This was one of the reasons why Corian became popular, it is solid color all the way through. There was, some time ago, that some plastic laminates were available with same-color substrates, but I haven’t seen any in quite a while.

-- Einstein: "The intuitive mind is a sacred gift, and the rational mind is a faithful servant. We have created a society that honors the servant and has forgotten the gift." I'm Poopiekat!!

View cabmaker's profile

cabmaker

1247 posts in 1309 days


#9 posted 1147 days ago

As far as I know color core is still available in 5-6 differant colors. The only one ive used was formica brand though its been several years.

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bfd

502 posts in 2307 days


#10 posted 1147 days ago

Hi Damian,

Whenever we asked to respond to an RFP at work the designer 9 out of 10 times calls out White High Gloss Lacquer vs. Laminate. Laminate as others have pointed out has a black substrate that will be visible. You could probably find color core in limited colors but Laminate also doesn’t have the depth that a lacquer finish will have. It is like comparing wood to wood grain laminate. One looks rich and has depth while the other looks flat and and well… plastic looking. I would build the case and then have it professionally finished to get that luxe look unless of course you are comfortable/experienced at finishing with high gloss lacquer/paint. good luck sounds like a fun project.

-- Brian, Folsom, CA http://www.brianfullerdesigns.com

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bfd

502 posts in 2307 days


#11 posted 1147 days ago

PS I wasn’t aware that frank lloyd wright was on lumberjocks.

-- Brian, Folsom, CA http://www.brianfullerdesigns.com

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